Nigerian fintech Okra raises $3.5M backed by Accenture Ventures and Susa Ventures

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The last five years have seen a plethora of fintech applications in Nigeria (and Africa, in general) grow at an astonishing rate. But most of these companies and developers find it difficult to access real-time banking data. This, in turn, creates a bottleneck when onboarding and verifying customers. Since 2019, Plaid-esque companies, but with different […]
The last five years have seen a plethora of fintech applications in Nigeria (and Africa, in general) grow at an astonishing rate. But most of these companies and developers find it difficult to access real-time banking data. This, in turn, creates a bottleneck when onboarding and verifying customers.

Since 2019, Plaid-esque companies, but with different twists to their offerings, have emerged to solve these issues. Today, Nigeria's Okra, arguably the first to gain mainstream attention, is announcing that it has closed a seed round of $3.5 million.

U.S.-based Susa Ventures led this latest tranche of investment. Other investors include TLcom Capital (the sole investor from its $1 million pre-seed round in 2020), newly joined Accenture Ventures and some angel investors. In total, Okra has raised $4.5 million in two rounds and the company will use the investment to expand its data infrastructure across Nigeria.

Okra likes to describe itself as an API "super-connector" that creates a secure portal and process to exchange real-time financial information between customers, applications and banks.

Fara Ashiru Jituboh and David Peterside founded the company in June 2019. Since its launch in January 2020, Okra has aggressively pushed by connecting to all banks in Nigeria and even claims to have a 99.9% guaranteed uptime.

Its business model provides integrations to developers and businesses into existing banking services and takes commissions off subsequent transactions. These integrations include accounts authorization, balance, identity, income, payments and transactions. Per partners (developers and businesses), they are well over 100 with some big names like Access Bank, Aella, Interswitch and uLesson.

Ashiru Jituboh tells TechCrunch that besides making APIs, Okra is in the business of selling "digital first-experiences and transformation".

"We are building an open finance infrastructure that enables developers and businesses to offer digital-first experiences and…
Tage Kene-Okafor
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